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User Experience Storyboard Reviews
Home > Assignments > User experience storyboard results > Reviews for Ryan Gulland

Ryan Gulland
spiro
[review]

 Tainted Water The Black Codex Cthulu's Daughter storyboard design/website Eldritch Spiro (Lovecreaftian Horror)
Average Rating
 
Client 1:
Client 2:
Reviewer 3:
Reviewer 4:
1-marginal     2-ok    3-good     4-very good    5-outstanding

Innovativeness and potential of Tainted Water storyboard

Client 1:

I like the concept, but I'm concerned about using actual water. Having water near electrical equipment is always dangerous, and 5 Wits has not had success with it in the past. Consider how you would mitigate that risk (as well as the inevitable erosion caused by the water over time), or whether it would be better to substitute small blue objects instead of the water. And how would you measure how much "water" had been poured into the top basins?

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Client 2:

Moving a bucket on ropes is a great teamwork challenge. Good visuals.

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Reviewer 3:

Well this is certainly spooky! I like how you paid a lot attention to the aesthetics of the room to really set the scene for the users. The challenge is a good mix of mental and physical, and seems to be pretty unique to the escape the room genre. One thing to consider about the design as you have it now is the variable number of people that will be passing through the room. Of course, if there are too many people for the number of ropes, that is okay. But if there are four ropes that need to be operated by effectively four different people, but there aren't that many people passing through the room, that may be a problem. There could be a way (although maybe a little less aesthetically integrated) to not use direct manipulation of the ropes, but instead have more centralized joysticks so that one person can operate multiple "ropes" at a time. Something to consider.

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Reviewer 4:

The tainted water user experience is based on the idea of pulling a bowl of water from a much larger container via ropes, while having to avoid tentacle-like obstacles in order to not spill the water from the ball. The idea seems quite unique. The challenge requires multiple people to collaborate to solve it - but it is not clear whether it can also be solved by a single person or not. Also, what happens to the ball after they take it out of the container? Who will reset the challenge for the next group of participants?

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Innovativeness and potential of The Black Codex storyboard

Client 1:

I like how you use lighting to draw players to a certain spot in the room. It's also good that you've already considered how to win 1 vs 2 stars, etc. But I don't understand the game. The symbols in the fog correlate to symbols on the top row of the room, ok. How does that lead to "They read down the compiled list for the next quote"? What list? What quote? How are they activating the rooms?

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Client 2:

Correlating the code above the book to the code on the wall to the objects in the room may be too difficult for most groups. Maybe just show the correct symbol order above the book?

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Reviewer 3:

Again, I really like the aesthetics you are proposing in your designs. Here, the lighting of the corridor (or lack there of) and the fog pouring from the book certainly set the scene that you are trying to create. The failure mode of this design seems really cool as well, with the book closing on it's own and the lighting changing to communicate to the users that they haven't completed the task. The task itself though could maybe be iterated on a bit more, and be more innovative than activating the appropriate symbols. I think it's a unique challenge in the sense that there essentially multiple mini challenges that you have to complete in order to fully complete the entire room, but I worry that these individuals challenges may be a little too easy and repetitive once users get the hang of it. I think maybe having each quote have it's own way of translating might be interesting. For example, one way you can simply click on the pressure pads, but the next might require for them all to be pressed at the same time, while the next might require for them to all be pressed quickly in a short amount of time. There's a lot of ways you can go about this, and I think there's definitely some promise here if you iterate on the challenge a few more times.

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Reviewer 4:

I find this storyboard and its explanation confusing and difficult to understand. There are elements that seems to be missing from the plot or not explained well enough for me to fully understand what is actually happening. For instance, the author should elaborate what is meant by "The apperance is followed by the utterance of a string of three gutteral sounds" Also, why would they be "ominously told of their failure" if they have already found the symbols in the room? The author speaks of the users reentering the room - yet it seems that they are already inside the room? In the last storyline, the author speaks of the users finishing another two translations, but it is not clear what the process of achieving a translation is? Also how many translations are there in total? Perhaps the underlying intent of this challenge is interesting and fun, but it is not explained in a way that makes that clear. There is also no mention of what the auto-reset mechanisms is.

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Innovativeness and potential of Cthulu's Daughter storyboard

Client 1:

Eggs are known to crack after being warmed, not after being looked at... how could you make the connection between the eyes and the cracks clearer? Also, what happens if someone tries to pick up the egg? Or if they just cover the egg itself, rather than covering the eyes looking at the egg? This should still stop the reaction, but it would be too easy. However, the mechanic itself - of trying to cover as many eyes as possible - could be fun.

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Client 2:

This seems like a fun concept. Leaving several of the eyes lit while adding more will make for some fun, "twister-like" contortions.

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Reviewer 3:

This is a cool take on the classic Indian Jones thing (don't remember which movie) of "don't look at the statue in the eyes" or whatever it is :). I think this is another nice mix of mental and physical prowess, beginning with users needing to creatively understand what's going on, and then needing to react quickly enough to complete the task effectively. The egg could be a neat prop to explore further, and being able to have this egg repeatedly crack and reset itself would be an interesting challenge to take on. It might be a similar method to the broken pipe example we saw in class, but there might be other ways to achieve this as well (mechanically separating, stretchable materials, etc.). I also wonder what the exit will be like. What I mean by this is most of the time part of the puzzle is needed to be solved in order to get a door code or combination or something in order to get out. This one seems a little segmented from that aspect, and it might be worth trying to tie in how the users are going to exit with the rest of the challenge. A relatively simple example would be that the exit door would be hidden, and after all the eyes have been pressed, one of the eyes turns to another color, and pressing it reveals the hidden exit to which you can escape from. Another way would be to rotate the egg or something which would click it into place and again reveal the hidden door. I think this idea is really interesting, and has potential to be worth pursuing further.

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Reviewer 4:

There are eyes in the room that glow ever more brightly and then they disappear (what is meant by disappear?). There is an egg in the center of the room and a fissure appears on it at the time when the eyes "disappear". What mechanism causes the fissure to appear? What is meant by "the egg cracks twice more, and then loudly ejects them from the room"? What would the participants be covering the eyes with? How big are those eyes and where are they positioned? There are some contradicting statements - first the author speaks of only two cracking sounds, then the author states "the dreaded cracking sound is delayed". Are there more cracking sounds after the second? Is the cracking continuous? What is meant by "new sets of eyes" - how are those eyes appearing and where? The author also begins speaking of stars - "Two cracks makes one star..." - are those stars physical objects that are appearing from some other place in the room? At the end, there is a mention of "trade sweaty brows for an yet unblemished egg" the meaning of which is unclear in the context of the storylines leading up to this trade event. With so many unaddressed questions, I find it difficult to comment on the innovativeness and potential of this challenge.

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Storyboard design and website presentation and execution

Client 1:

I think either there are some pictures missing in between paragraphs, or the paragraphs are spaced so far apart that it only looks like there are pictures missing. Either way, a little confusing. Otherwise though, the pictures are clear and the text is typed instead of handwritten, hallelujah! And thank you for numbering and titling your storyboards so they're easy to refer to. One possible tweak - make a way to navigate to different storyboards without scrolling.

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Client 2:

This storyboards are very detailed and describe the victory and failure conditions of the rooms well.

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Reviewer 3:

I like how your website ties in with the overall theme you are trying to accomplish in your rooms, and it really shows that you put in a little extra time and effort to make your website look clean and informative. I like the layout of the storyboards as they're more creatively structured than just boxes on a page, and made me feel more engaged when I was reading through it somehow (not sure what these mind tricks are :P). Only thing that might be nice to add to the website is a toolbar so that you can jump to various storyboards without having to scroll through all of them, but this is a minor thing and not a huge deal. On an unrelated note your drawings are all very crisp and nice to look at, I don't know if it took you a lot of time or you're just a great artist, but they look really good!

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Reviewer 4:

The website and drawings are done well. The presentation of the first challenge is done very well, but for the other two the explanations are not easy to comprehend and lacking clarity.

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Room theme, Eldritch Spiro (Lovecreaftian Horror): engaging and interesting? identifiable with target users?

Client 1:

People definitely identify with "spooky monster horror." I don't know how many people would connect it to Lovecraft (or how many people even know who Lovecraft is), but people would get that it's spooky monsters.

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Client 2:

This theme is perhaps aimed at a niche audience and may benefit from a broadening back to "generic spooky" rather than squids.

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Reviewer 3:

I think overall these are all very unique and creative designs aesthetically, and most of the puzzles are as well, but with a little more iteration and idea generation, this theme could definitely be worth pursuing in the final project. I worry that some people might not get the bigger picture of the theme, but this might not necessarily detract from the theme of the room if it's designed as well as it's laid out in your storyboards. I think this has a lot of promise, and should be considered in the discussion with your team of what theme to eventually go with!

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Reviewer 4:

The challenges definitely resonate with the theme. I find the first challenge interesting, engaging and highly innovative.

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